28 Ambulance Calls Later: A Parent's Guide to the 'Borg' Drinking Trend Among Teens

Explore the risks of the Borg drinking trend among teens and gain valuable parenting insights to help safeguard your college-aged child from this hazardous behavior

Many college campuses prepared for celebrations as St. Patrick's Day is now passing. While it's essential to allow our children to have fun and socialize, it's equally important for parents to be aware of the latest trends in alcohol consumption, such as "borgs." This article aims to provide mothers with essential information on this new drinking trend and offer parenting tips on discussing responsible drinking with their college-aged children.

The term "borg," short for "blackout rage gallon," refers to a plastic gallon jug filled with a mix of hard alcohol, water, flavorings, electrolytes, and/or caffeine. Borgs have become increasingly popular on college campuses across the United States, with the hashtag #borg accumulating over 99 million views on social media. While borgs have been praised for their convenience and customizability, they come with significant health risks.

The University of Massachusetts, Amherst, recently experienced 28 ambulance calls related to alcohol intoxication from borgs during off-campus parties. In response, the University of Massachusetts and Boston University have warned against consuming borgs. Health professionals have expressed concerns about binge drinking and the dangerous combination of alcohol and caffeine found in many borg recipes.

As mothers, educating ourselves and our college-aged children about responsible drinking is essential. Here are some parenting tips to help navigate this conversation:

  1. Stay informed: Keep up-to-date with the latest trends and risks associated with alcohol consumption, such as the rise of borgs. This knowledge will help you effectively communicate with your child about the potential dangers.     
  2. Open communication: Establish an open dialogue with your child about responsible drinking. Encourage them to ask questions and share their experiences with you. This open communication will foster trust and help your child feel comfortable discussing their choices with you.
  3. Offer alternatives: Suggest safer ways to consume alcohol, such as limiting consumption to one shot per hour or skipping the alcohol altogether. Encourage your child to avoid mixing alcohol with caffeine, as this combination can be particularly dangerous.
  4. Promote self-awareness: Remind your child to be aware of their limits and how their body responds to alcohol. Teach them to listen to their body, take breaks, and never leave their drink unattended.
  5. Emphasize the importance of safety: Discuss the potential consequences of binge drinking and mixing alcohol with other substances. Reinforce the importance of prioritizing their health and well-being over fitting in with their peers.

By staying informed and maintaining open communication with our college-aged children, we can empower them to make responsible choices regarding alcohol consumption. As mothers, let's work together to create a safer environment for our children and promote responsible drinking habits.